Winterising A Swimming Pool
Winter is coming which means there are opportunities to sell winter products to the pool market. Obviously it helps to give the right advice, so Manny Crespo offers some handy tips.
Winterising a pool is a simple procedure that will allow for a swimming pool to be correctly maintained during the cooler months. This is particularly handy if heating is absent and the pool is not used regularly.
Firstly, don’t even think about switching off the filter and forgetting about the pool for the next four months. It is far better to regularly maintain a pool for the simple reason that this will not incur the expense of bringing it back on track when it gets warm again. Quite simply, the combined amount of time, effort and money required to get a pool back into shape for the next season is so much greater than the little effort needed to maintain it during winter.
- The sand filter or D.E. filter should be thoroughly backwashed or the cartridge in the cartridge filter should be cleaned with a filter degreaser. Remember to backwash before adding chemicals – if not, the chemicals will be lost down the backwash line. The D.E. filters should also be topped with filter powder as required.
- The skimmer basket, hair and lint pot and the pool itself should be free of debris and all ‘o’ rings should be lubricated with a silicone-based lubricant. An on-site inspection may be necessary when the filter is turned on and it turns out the flow of returning water is weak.
- The total alkalinity should be adjusted if it is below 80 – 120 parts per million. Adjust the pH to 7.2 to 7.6 by adding acid if the level is too high or increasing the pH if it is too low. It is advisable to mix all chemicals in a full bucket of water before adding to the pool. The acid should always be added to the water and never in amounts exceeding 500 ml.
- Add a pool shocking chemical to ensure that the correct Chlorine level is between 1 and 2 parts per million (ppm). A long life algaecide specifically designed for winter can also be added. Chlorine levels should be checked every week for granular or liquid chlorine.Salt Water Pools
- If the pool is equipped with a salt chlorinator the cells should be properly cleaned and have a salt water conditioner. It will be necessary to check the chlorine level every two weeks thereafter to ensure that there is a constant level of 1-2 ppm free available chlorine at all times. The production control on the salt chlorinator may have to be adjusted to increase decrease output.
- A long life algaecide that is specifically designed for winter should be added, and the filter duration should be set to two or three hours per day. After this, chlorine level and pH levels should only need checking every second week. Regularly empty the skimmer if it has a build up of leaves. This is particularly important after windy days if the pool is located near trees.
- Pool lights should be on for 30 minutes a day to prevent a build up of moisture within the light and wiring.
- Finally, check that the water level is half way up the skimmer box opening and that the pressure gauge on the filter does not indicate backwash.These simple procedures will ready any pool for those long awaited first days of summer. In particular, they will prevent costly start up costs, let alone the time and effort of restoring a non maintained pool.
Waterco’s principal activities are wholesale export and manufacture of equipment and accessories in the swimming pool, spa and water treatment industries, as well as packing and distribution of swimming pool and spa chemicals. Call (02) 9898-8686 or visit http://www.waterco.com.au/ for more information.